US-based mid-price department store retailer JCPenney Company Inc has recently announced a series of strategic actions to build on its accomplishments in 2010 and allow it to focus on its highest potential growth opportunities. The actions include closing certain under-performing store locations, winding down its catalogue and outlet operations, and streamlining its call centre operations and custom decorating business.
Myron E (Mike) Ullman, III, chairman and chief executive officer, JCPenney Company Inc, said, “We are focused on increasing profitability and accelerating growth. To achieve this, we undertook a thorough evaluation of our operations to ensure we are managing costs and allocating our resources to the strategies that will best drive both our top and bottom lines, with the objective of delivering enhanced returns to shareholders.”
“We see significant opportunities ahead in our core department store and online businesses as part of our long-range plan and we are well prepared to capitalise on them in 2011 and the years to come,” Ullman added.
The actions that the company is taking include the following:
• Closing five JCPenney department stores located in Morrow, Georgia; West Dundee, Ill; Des Moines, Iowa; High Point, North Carolina; and Culpeper, Virginia; and one JCPenney Home Store located in Duluth, Georgia.
• Completion of the wind down of the company’s legacy catalogue business, including exiting its catalogue outlets. This business includes a total of 19 outlet stores, which carry a significant amount of catalogue merchandise.
• Realignment of its call centre operations through closing its facilities in Grand Rapids, Michigan and Albuquerque, New Mexico and consolidating all activity supporting its department store and online customers into three existing facilities in Columbus, Ohio, Pittsburgh and Milwaukee.
• Reorganisation of its custom decorating business to redeploy resources that drive productivity and profitability while creating a more compelling offer for customers. As part of this process, the company will close its Sacramento, California. Custom Decorating Fabrication facility, leaving one remaining facility in Statesville, NC, where it will increase its staffing to support customer demand.
“As we continue to position our company for the future, we are determined that these steps are necessary to capitalise on the growth opportunities we see ahead while we ensure we are managing costs appropriately and continually enhancing the profitability of our operations,” said Ullman.
The company will initiate these actions over the course of 2011 and expects that they will result in a positive impact to earnings in 2012.
– IndiaRetailing Bureau